Keto Food List for Beginners | 6 Foods Category

Keto Food List for Beginners – Overview

Keto food contains low carb and high fat content. Also known as the ketogenic diet, these foods can boost your health, promote weight loss, and leave you feeling better.

Reducing your carb intake places your body in the ketosis metabolic state, increasing its ability to burn fat for energy.

The body also converts fat into ketones in your liver, generating energy for the brain.

Keto diets can reduce insulin and blood sugar levels in the human body. Read on to understand what you should include and eliminate from your keto food list for beginners.  

What You Should Include in Your Keto Food List

1. Seafood and Fish

Keto Food List for Beginners

Keto Food List for Beginners – Seafood and Fish

Fish contains sufficient amounts of selenium, potassium, and B vitamins. It’s also carb-free and protein-dense.

Fatty fish like mackerel, sardines, salmon, and albacore contain omega-3 fats, which promote insulin sensitivity while lowering sugar levels in the blood. Some studies suggest that regular fish intake boosts mental health while reducing the risk of incurable diseases. (1, 2)

Here are some of the best fish and seafood options for your keto diet.

  • Mackerel
  • Salmon
  • Herring
  • Tuna
  • Oysters
  • Bay scallops and shrimp
  • Mahi-mahi
  • Shellfish
  • Sardines

2. Low-Carb Vegetables

Starch-free veggies contain low amounts of carbs and calories. They are also rich in other nutrients like minerals and vitamin C.

Further, low-carb vegetables contain antioxidants that protect your body against cell-destroying free radicals. Some of the keto-friendly veggies you can consider include:

  • Green beans
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli
  • Zucchini
  • Bell peppers
  • Spinach
  • Cabbage
  • Asparagus
  • Eggplant
  • Cucumber
  • Olives
  • Lettuce
  • Tomatoes


Cheese contains high levels of fat and zero carbs, making it an ideal option for your keto diet. It’s also calcium and protein-dense.

However, an ounce portion of cheese gives you approximately 30% of the daily saturated fat value. To prevent heart-related diseases, monitor your portions when consuming cheese.

Cheese options you can include in your keto foods list include:

  • Cheddar
  • Cream
  • Chevre
  • Brie
  • Feta
  • Goat
  • Mozzarella
  • Camembert
  • Colby jack
  • Limburger


Avocados contain potassium and monounsaturated fats, which are friendly to the heart.

Half of a medium-sized avocado comes with 9 grams of carbs, out of which 7 grams is fiber.

Replacing animal fats with plant-based fats can help reduce your triglyceride and cholesterol levels.

One study established that people who consumed avocado experienced increased HDL cholesterol levels. (3)

3. Poultry and Meat

Meat is a great lean protein source and is ideal for the keto diet. Fresh poultry and meat do not contain carbohydrates and are rich in B Vitamins and minerals like zinc, selenium, and potassium.

While you may eat processed meats like sausages and bacon, they are not heart-friendly, and over-consumption can increase your risk of developing various cancer types.

Opt for fresh beef, fish, or chicken over processed meat. 

4. Eggs

Keto Food List for Beginners


Eggs contain sufficient B vitamins, proteins, antioxidants, and minerals. You will get 12 grams of protein and zero carbs from two eggs. Some studies suggest that eggs stimulate hormones that stabilize blood sugar levels while keeping you fuller for longer.

Eggs also contain zeaxanthin and lutein antioxidants, which help promote eye health.

While egg yolks are cholesterol-dense, eating them will hardly increase your blood cholesterol levels. Instead, they seem to adjust the size of LDL particles which protects you from the risk of heart-related diseases. (4)

5. Cottage Cheese and Plain Greek Yogurt

Cottage cheese and plain Greek yogurts are calcium and protein-dense. While they contain some amount of carbohydrates, you can include them in your keto diet in moderation.

Every 5 ounces of plain Greek yogurt has 12 grams of protein and 5 grams of carbs.

5-ounces of cottage cheese contain 18 grams of protein and 5 grams of carbs. Studies suggest that both protein and calcium can promote feelings of fullness while decreasing appetite.

High-fat cottage cheese and yogurts keep you fuller for longer making them ideal for your keto diet high-fat. 

6. Healthy Oils, Seeds, and Nuts

Seeds and nuts are rich in healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, protein, and fiber. They also contain low levels of carbs.

Coconut and olive oils are ideal for a keto diet. Coconut oil has MCTs (medium-chain triglycerides), which boost ketone production.

MCTs are said to increase your metabolic rate while promoting the loss of belly fat and weight. (5)

Olive oil contains high oleic acid levels and helps reduce the risk of heart-related complications. Always consume your healthy fats in moderation.

Some nuts and seed options ideal for the keto diet include:

  • Sesame seeds
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Walnuts
  • Flaxseeds
  • Pecans
  • Pistachios
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Cashews
  • Brazil nuts
  • Almonds

Other foods you can include in your keto diet include:

  • Berries like blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries
  • Cocoa powder and dark chocolate
  • Unsweetened tea or coffee

What to Eliminate from Your Keto Food List

Keto Food List for Beginners

Foods to avoid on keto

1. Grains

Both whole and refined grains contain high amounts of carbohydrates, which can hinder your keto diet journey.

However, you can still consume them limitedly. According to keto diet experts, you should eliminate all types of grains and their by-products from your keto food list.

These grains include:

  • Wheat
  • Oatmeal
  • Rice
  • Quinoa
  • Whole wheat flour
  • Barley
  • Rye
  • Corn

2. Fruits

While some fruits are keto-friendly, others contain lots of carbs and glucose. Avoid the following fruits while on a keto diet.

  • Grapes
  • Apples
  • Dates 
  • Bananas
  • Peaches
  • Mangoes
  • Raisins
  • Pears
  • Pineapples

3. Veggies

Some vegetables are non-keto friendly, especially those that grow under the ground. Such veggies are carbohydrate and starch-dense.

Avoid the following veggies while on a keto diet.

  • Corn
  • Peas
  • Yam
  • Carrot
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Potatoes

4. Beverages 

Many of the beverages available today contain high sugar levels, which can inhibit the production of ketones in the human body. Some beverages you should avoid include:

  • Soda
  • Cola
  • Margarita
  • Protein shakes
  • Fruit shakes
  • Lemon
  • Iced tea
  • Vitamin water
  • Energy drinks

Other foods you should avoid while on a keto diet include:

Beans and legumes like: 

  • Baked beans
  • Black beans
  • Lima beans
  • Lobia
  • Lentils
  • Green peas
  • Kidney beans

Low-fat dairy products like:

  • Toned milk
  • Low-fat cream
  • Low-fat milkshake
  • Low-fat butter
  • Condensed milk

5. Artificial Sweeteners

Artificial sweeteners contain additives like acesulfame, saccharin, aspartame, and sucralose, which can trigger sugar cravings.

They are also associated with various health complications like high blood sugar and cholesterol levels and migraines.


To benefit from the keto diet, strictly follow the tricks and tips associated with it.

Consider collaborating with a dietician where possible to ensure your body is getting all the essential nutrients. The keto diet can protect your body from many health complications. 

Keto Friendly Foods Foods to Avoid on Keto
Seafood and fish like mackerel, salmon, herring, tuna, oysters, bay scallops and shrimp, mahi-mahi, shellfish, and sardinesGrains like wheat, oatmeal, rice, quinoa, whole wheat flour, barley, rye, and corn
Low-carb vegetables like green beans, cauliflower, broccoli, zucchini, bell peppers, spinach, cabbage, asparagus, eggplant, cucumber, olives, lettuce, and tomatoesFruits like grapes, apples, dates, bananas, peaches, mangoes, raisins, pears, and pineapples
Cheese like cheddar, cream, chevre, brie, feta, goat cheese, mozzarella, camembert, colby jack, and limburger cheeseVegetables like corn, peas, yam, carrot, sweet potatoes, and irish potatoes
AvocadoBeverages like soda, cola, margarita, protein shakes, fruit shakes, lemon, iced tea, vitamin water, and energy drinks
Meat and poultryBeans like baked, black, and lima beans, lobia, lentils, green peas, and kidney beans.
EggsLow-fat dairy products like toned milk, low-fat milkshake, low-fat butter, and condensed milk.
Plain Greek yogurt and cottage cheeseArtificial sweeteners with additives like acesulfame, saccharin, aspartame, and sucralose
Healthy oils, seeds, and nuts like sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, walnuts, flaxseeds, pecans, pistachios, cashews, brazil nuts, almonds, and macadamia nuts
Berries like raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and strawberries
Cocoa powder and dark chocolate
unsweetened tea or coffee

Frequently Searched Keto Friendly Questions

Are Peanuts Keto Friendly?
Is Watermelon Keto Friendly?
Is Quinoa Keto Friendly
Is Milk Keto Friendly?
Is Oatmeal Keto Friendly?
Is Hummus Keto Friendly?
Are Beans Keto Friendly?
Are Carrots Keto Friendly?
Is Honey Keto Friendly?
What Fruits Can You Eat on Keto?

See Also

Free Keto Diet Plan

Vegan Keto Meal Plan

Keto Bread Recipe

BRAT Diet Food List

Intermittent Fasting Food List

Optavia Diet Food List


  1. Kühn L, MacIntyre UE, Kotzé C, Becker PJ, Wenhold FA. Twelve weeks of additional fish intake improves the cognition of cognitively intact, resource-limited elderly people: a randomized control trial. The journal of nutrition, health & aging. 2022 Feb;26(2):119-26.
  2. Nurk E, Drevon CA, Refsum H, Solvoll K, Vollset SE, Nygård O, Nygaard HA, Engedal K, Tell GS, Smith AD. Cognitive performance among the elderly and dietary fish intake: the Hordaland Health Study. The American journal of clinical nutrition. 2007 Nov 1;86(5):1470-8.
  3. Mahmassani HA, Avendano EE, Raman G, Johnson EJ. Avocado consumption and risk factors for heart disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis. The American journal of clinical nutrition. 2018 Apr 1;107(4):523-36.
  4. Kuang H, Yang F, Zhang Y, Wang T, Chen G. The impact of egg nutrient composition and its consumption on cholesterol homeostasis. Cholesterol. 2018;2018.
  5. St-Onge MP, Bosarge A. Weight-loss diet that includes consumption of medium-chain triacylglycerol oil leads to a greater rate of weight and fat mass loss than does olive oil. The American journal of clinical nutrition. 2008 Mar 1;87(3):621-6.